Barclays joins Zapp as Apple Pay looms

Barclays joins Zapp as Apple Pay looms

With the UK launch of Apple Pay imminent, Barclays has joined the ranks of financial institutions and retailers supporting the home-baked 'Pay by Bank App' from Zapp.

A notable absentee from both Apple Pay and Zapp, Barclays has now thrown its weight behind the VocaLink-developed service, which enables users to pay for their purchases direct from their online bank account via a bank's own mobile app. Corporate and consumer users of Barclays Pingit mobile money transfer service will be the first bank app live with Zapp when it opens in October.

The addition of payments via the Pingit app makes Zapp’s Pay by Bank app the UK’s first total market mobile payment service, available to all consumers regardless of who they bank with, or which smartphone brand they use. The news comes the day after Apple confirmed that it is about to go live with Apple Pay in the UK on 14 July.

Zapp will initially be available online-only, but VocaLink has confirmed that an instore POS-based option is waiting in the wings.

The addition of Zapp to the Pingit payments portfolio also means that Barclays Corporate Banking unit will be able to act as a distributor of the service to corporates operating in retail , transport, utilities, local authorities and financial services. In doing so Barclays joins WorldPay, Elavon, Optimal Payments, Realex and SagePay in spreading the word about Zapp to the wider UK merchant market.

Sainsbury’s, Asda, House of Fraser, Thomas Cook and Shop Direct are among the major British retail brands that have already announced their support for Zapp. HSBC, First Direct, Nationwide, Santander, which are all Apple Pay supporters, will also support Zapp at launch.

Peter Keenan, chief executive of Zapp, comments: “We’re delighted to be able to announce that Pay by Bank app will now include Barclays Pingit. Having Barclays come on board - with their huge scale and enviable reputation for innovation, coupled with their extensive corporate client base - reaffirms that Barclays and Zapp are at the cutting edge of Fintech, innovation and collaboration.”

Comments: (4)

Dean Wallace
Dean Wallace - ACI - Global 07 July, 2015, 11:361 like 1 like Great news for Zapp. Having s partner as mighty in this space as Barclays further supports a bank enabled wallet ecosystem. Will be interesting to watch the rollout of Apple and Zapp to see how fast adoption takes them both
Nealle Page
Nealle Page - Looking for new opportunities - London 08 July, 2015, 12:08Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

Indeed this is great news from Zapp.  My only concern is that it seems that everything about Zapp is moving at a glacial pace.  I get the feeling that the banks are not putting the kind of effort in that you would expect.  If we are keen to see an alternate "debit" scheme to reduce the influence of the Visa/MasterCard brands in that space, banks need to get a move on.  

I know of course that the acceptane footprint that the incumbants have built are hard to beat, but you'd think that this would encourage the banks and Zapp to get this out there and active as soon as possible.  

Nick Collin
Nick Collin - Collin Consulting Ltd - London 08 July, 2015, 17:32Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

Does anyone know how Paym fits in to this story?

According to what I read:

  • Paym allows consumers to make person-to-person transactions via their existing mobile banking app using mobile phone numbers
  • Zapp allows consumers to make payments to retailers utilising their existing mobile banking app

But both are mobile payment services run over Faster Payments, are presumably operated by Vocalink and all the UK banks now seem to be on Board via what used to be the Payments Council.  Surely it makes sense to merge the two things?


Dean Wallace
Dean Wallace - ACI - Global 08 July, 2015, 17:55Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes Nick - PayM also uses LINK. The owners of PayM are separate to the owners of Zapp (the latter is VocaLink). I can see the logic, but the owners are different.... well ultimately the owners are the banks I suppose! I wonder if the PSR would go that way with the same logic, or approve of the split and want even more of a split?